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Meet the winners of the 2022 ChurnHero Awards for Customer Success
The winners of 2022’s ChurnHero Awards, recognizing and celebrating ChurnZero customers who champion Customer Success with remarkable results, have been announced!
For the third year running, we asked CS teams who’ve challenged the status quo with innovative, meaningful, and customer-centric approaches to enter the ChurnHero Awards and tell us all about it.
This year’s awards feature five categories representing fundamental business goal of CS teams: onboarding, adoption, renewals and expansion, customer advocacy, and innovation. The entries we received were outstanding, exemplifying the power of CS as a revenue-driving growth engine for SaaS and subscription businesses, and the potential of Customer Success software to fuel standout results.
Our judges—a panel drawn from ChurnZero’s CX team and led by our CCO, Alli Tiscornia—have been hard at work since entries closed on November 28. Today, we’re proud and delighted to recognize the following Customer Success teams as 2022 ChurnHeroes.
Onboarding Hero: ClearGov
Transforming onboarding processes into effective, value-based workflows.
ClearGov, a budget and performance management software company serving local governments, outgrew its onboarding process after doubling its clients for two years running while also doubling its product offering.
“Our clients have a defined budget cycle and timeframe in which they use our products,” says Laurie Fox, director of client success at ClearGov. “If onboarding wasn’t completed in time for them to effectively use the products for the current budget cycle, it led to dissatisfaction. We were also hearing from some clients that they wanted more guidance throughout onboarding, as well as more training.”
The company created a new team of implementation managers and overhauled its onboarding journey with ChurnZero. The team now uses milestones and tasks to keep them on track, with custom plays to identify and engage customers who get stuck. As a result, ClearGov has reduced average onboarding time by 26%—with a 100% customer satisfaction rating captured through post-onboarding ChurnZero CSAT surveys.
“Not only are clients getting through onboarding quicker, they are also achieving success with our products at a much faster rate,” says Laurie. “This has led to an increase in cross-sells as well as client advocacy which for ClearGov includes references, participation in webinars and events, and case studies.”
Adoption Hero: Cision
Increasing product adoption and customer ROI with thoughtful approaches.
Cision, a comprehensive communications platform enabling more than 100,000 public relations and marketing professionals around the world to understand, influence and amplify their stories, needed to increase product adoption yet struggled with limited visibility into how their customers were using their products.
“Our teams always had the ability to extract high-level adoption metrics for one-to-one customer engagements.” says Lukas Alexander, Senior Director of Customer Success & Operations at Cision. “However, we needed more insights and automation to deliver value to inactive users in a one-to-many approach as well.”
The team worked to gain a better picture of customers’ behavior through advanced adoption measurement using more robust customer segmentation and internal interviews, and with this intelligence, engaged customers with email campaigns in an automated play they called “Success Tips,” sharing best-practice and recommendations to deliver maximum value to their customers.
Cision’s open-rate on these emails increased from 31% to 39%, while overall subscribers increased by 40%. Many recipients found the emails so helpful that they requested to sign up their entire teams and setup follow-up meetings. Internally, Cision’s teams report that the data generated allows them to better understand customers’ objectives, enabling them to work more proactively, and ultimately helps their customers achieve their desired PR and communications outcomes.
Renewal/Expansion Hero: Skykit
Boosting account renewals and expansions using data and automation.
Skykit, a comprehensive workplace experience solutions company, knew that a segment of acquired customers, representing significant recurring revenue, were experiencing poor billing and activation service as they worked through the complexities of a new third party, yet struggled to identify them on an account-by-account basis.
The team used ChurnZero to identify these at-risk customers through NPS surveys, license utilization, support tickets and billing type, then engaged them through a follow-up playbook.
“Through this, we identified the detractors and passives, and uncovered that we would lose them at renewal,” says Lolly Taylor, EVP of Customer Success at Skykit. “Our team stepped up and not only turned those detractors and passives around, but uncovered expansion opportunities. Today, this customer segment’s NRR is at 124%.
“Our executive team has been extremely pleased with the results, allowing us to further define swim lanes between sales and success with the success team owning all revenue expansion and renewals, says Lolly. “A member of our team has been the company’s top revenue driver for two quarters this year. We’ve made believers out of executives, product, sales and marketing!”
Advocacy Hero: Cority
Cultivating customer advocates and brand evangelists to drive growth.
Cority, an enterprise EHS and ESG software provider, was struggling to track customer satisfaction and feedback with a single, standalone NPS campaign per year.
“Our NPS campaigns provided limited feedback from customers and limited opportunities to see if our efforts to listen to their feedback impacted their experience in a positive way,” says Simona Barcau, vice president of Customer Success at Cority. “It was very challenging to track trends in customer satisfaction, and all data was kept in separate excel sheets that were not available in any system of record.”
The Cority team began using ChurnZero to launch evergreen NPS campaigns automatically whenever a customer completed a specified milestone or manually via CSM entry. To boost engagement, they added a non-profit gifting incentive, with customers able to choose a non-profit organization to which to donate—a gesture that made a significant impact.
“Our efforts resulted in our NPS improving by 27 points compared to 2021, and by two points compared to the target we set for 2022,” says Simona. “Survey responses to date are 166% of the target for the year and over four times better than the last 10 years’ average. On top of this, our give-back campaign empowered our customers to donate and clean the ocean, plant trees, and reduce our carbon footprint.”
Innovation Hero: Boulevard
Using ChurnZero’s platform creatively to better support customers.
Boulevard, a scheduling, management and client experience platform for appointment-based self-care businesses, needed to improve customer engagement, internal communication and feedback loops, while also scaling its CS team intelligently to cover more accounts.
The Boulevard team partnered with ChurnZero to automate and integrate their workflows and initiatives. To boost customer engagement, they integrated ChurnZero with their native tooling and other third-party apps to create numerous “surprise and delight” moments for their customers. For feedback loops, they used the webhook step within their survey plays (NPS and CSAT) to bring real-time customer feedback from customers to their product and leadership teams through Slack.
“A process that once required multiple steps is now fully automated and allows our CS leaders to track and hold accountable CSM actions,” says Will Patterson, manager of customer experience operations at Boulevard. “With the help of ChurnZero, we’ve been able to seamlessly transition customer engagement from a reactive process to a proactive process through which we have clear visibility into the overall health of our accounts.”
“It’s also enabled us to seamlessly scale such that our CSM team can now cover our entire portfolio of accounts,” says Will. “This in turn directly – and positively! – impacts things like average customer revenue, average order value, and no-show rate.”
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